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Thursday, November 17, 2022

 Great American Smokeout[1]

 

The Great American Smoke out is an informal holiday aimed at encouraging citizens to quit or plan to quit smoking. Smoking is a habit that involves consumption of tobacco smoke, which has been shown to cause a variety of cancers, most notably lung and mouth cancer. Lung cancer is currently the leading cause of Cancer death in the United States and the most preventable type of cancer worldwide. The Great American Smokeout is promoted by the American Cancer Society and is held on the third Thursday of November each year in an effort to reduce cases of preventable cancers, reduce secondhand smoke and improve the health of all Americans.

 

Great American Smokeout Facts & Quotes

 

·       The holiday began in 1970, when a man in Massachusetts asked people to give up smoking for one day, and donate the money saved to the local high school scholarship fund.

·       According to the Center for Disease Control, smoking is responsible for 1 in 3 cancer-related deaths, and 1 in 5 deaths from any cause.  Worldwide, tobacco use causes more than 5 million deaths per year.

·       The Center for Disease Control state that life expectancy for smokers is 10 years less than that of non-smokers.

·       The Center for Disease Control states that middle-aged man who smokes, triples his risk of dying from some type of heart disease.

·       More Doctors Smoke Camels than Any Other Cigarette - line used in 1949 commercial for Camel Cigarettes.

 

Great American Smokeout Top Events and Things to Do

 

·       If you are a smoker, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for support in quitting.  You can also get help from organizations like smokefree.gov and ucanquit2.org.

·       Organize a sporting event like soccer or softball as a way to have fun and otherwise help smokers take their minds off of smoking.

·       Talk to someone you know who smokes and challenge them to quit for the day.

·       Give out sugarless gum to otherwise smokers as friendly gesture to promote an alternative.

·       Watch movies and documentaries that aim to uncover the tobacco industry and impact of tobacco addictions:
1) The Insider (1999)
2) Addiction Incorporated (2011)
3) Dying for a Smoke (1992)
4) Smoke & Mirrors: A History of Denial (2000)


SAINT ELIZABETH OF HUNGARY

 

Luke, Chapter 19, Verse 41-42

41 As he drew near, he saw the city and wept over it, 42saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for PEACE—but now it is hidden from your eyes.

 

The results of the 2022 midterm election reveal that women and the next generation voted overwhelmingly for democrats. Our Lord must indeed be weeping for we do not know what makes peace and have chosen abortion and the love of money over our Lord. 

Life, Liberty, and Happiness 

I believe that the abortion of the unborn is an injustice that must be corrected. Unfortunately, about half of the voting population believe that abortion is a right that is protected by the US Constitution. Many profess the mantra: My body; my choice.

I believe that the American Declaration of Independence which states governments are established to protect unalienable rights that come from God and that among these are the right to life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Are these words just words highlighted by men influenced by the age of enlightenment or are they words inspired by the will of the creator or dare we say God? America’s founders realized that these rights are natural rights that come directly from God and as such they must be protected. 

Thomas Jefferson who was the principal author of our Declaration of Independence to England and the World; stated: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Much of our misery in the world is caused by laws that reverse the order ensuring that wealth trumps liberty and liberty trumps life. Jefferson and our founding fathers of this country knew that God’s law had a primary focus on life. Jefferson’s argument is not that the right to life, the right to liberty, and the right to pursue happiness originate in government, but that these rights have a divine origin.  Jefferson argued that the job of all governments was to “secure” rights that God had already granted.  In other words, the rights to life and liberty do not come into being with the force of government fiat; life and liberty are pre-political rights already granted by God. Acts of legislators or the rulings of courts when established must ensure that laws are enacted and enforced that support life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  Today, we have lost that concept. 

Indeed, as Jefferson noted in our declaration men “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights.”  Whether it is self-evident or not, it is the philosophical belief in the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness that helped make America a light to the nations.  Let’s continue to promote and defend all three with Life first, followed by liberty and then the pursuit of happiness. To protect liberty at the expense of life is an injustice. 

After the American revolution again in the establishment of the American Constitution we see that the framers again reasserted the primacy of life in the Preamble of the U.S. Constitution[1] which reads: 

"We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America." 

It is my contention that the Preamble is the mission statement for the whole constitution. In other words, the entire constitution is designed to bring about the mission stated in the preamble. Therefore, if we focus on the statement: “and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity” we see that the U.S. Constitution is designed to secure the blessings of liberty for both the living and the next generation “our posterity”. Therefore, the unborn have a right to life. 

St. Elizabeth of Hungary[2] Scrutiny of the Powerful


St. Elizabeth, Duchess of Thuringia, it is said that the servant of God lost her mother, Gertrude, Queen of Hungary, about the year 1220. In the spirit of a holy Christian daughter, she gave abundant alms, redoubled her prayers and mortifications, exhausted the resources of her charity for the relief of that dear soul. God revealed to her that she had not done too much. One night the deceased appeared to her with a sad and emaciated countenance; she placed herself on her knees next to the bed, and said to her, weeping, “My daughter, you see at your feet your mother overwhelmed with suffering. I come to implore you to multiply your suffrages, that Divine Mercy may deliver me from the frightful torments I endure.

Oh! how much are those to be pitied who exercise authority over others? I expiate now the faults that I committed upon the throne. Oh! my daughter, I pray you by the pangs I endured when bringing you into the world, by the cares and anxieties which your education cost me, I conjure you to deliver me from my torments.” Elizabeth, deeply touched, arose immediately, took the discipline to blood, and implored God, with tears, to have mercy on her mother, Gertrude, declaring that she would not cease to pray until she had obtained her deliverance. Her prayers were heard.

St. Elizabeth of Hungary[3]

Elizabeth was the daughter of the Hungarian King Andrew II. At the age of four (b. 1207), she was brought to the court of her future husband, Ludwig, landgrave of Thuringia. After her marriage in 1221, she very conscientiously fulfilled her duties both toward her husband and as a servant of God.

During the night she would rise from bed and spend long periods in prayer. Zealously she performed all types of charitable acts; she put herself at the service of widows, orphans, the sick, the needy.

During a famine she generously distributed all the grain from her stocks, cared for lepers in one of the hospitals she established, kissed their hands and feet. For the benefit of the indigent, she provided suitable lodging. After the early death of her husband (in 1227 while on a crusade led by Emperor Frederick II), Elizabeth laid aside all royal dignities in order to serve God more freely. She put on simple clothing, became a tertiary of St. Francis, and showed great patience and humility.

Nor was she spared intense suffering - the goods belonging to her as a widow were withheld, she was forced to leave Wartburg. In Eisenach no one dared receive her out of fear of her enemies. Upon much pleading a shepherd of the landgrave permitted her to use an abandoned pig sty. No one was allowed to visit or aid her; with her three children, of whom the youngest was not more than a few months old, she was forced to wander about in the winter's cold.

In 1228 she took the veil of the Sisters of the Third Order of St. Francis at Marburg and there built a hospital with some property still belonging to her. She retained for herself only a small mud house. All her strength and care were now devoted to the poor and the sick, while she obtained the few things she needed by spinning. Young in years but rich in good works, she slept in the Lord in 1231, only twenty-four years old.

Things to Do

·        Love for the poor is characteristic of every genuine follower of Christ, those lacking the truth are the poorest of the poor, spend some time on a regular basis studying your faith (by reading or taking a home study course) so that you will be prepared to feed those who are hungry for the truth.

·        Teach your children the Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy and give them practical examples.

·        Have your children help you bake bread like St. Elizabeth and distribute some to your neighbors.

·        St. Elizabeth is the patroness of the Franciscan Third Order (tertiary) and of all Catholic Charities. Find out more about what a third order is, particularly the Franciscan Third Order.

·        See Nameday Ideas for St. Elizabeth, including dessert and symbols and prayers.

·        Follow these links for some wonderful works of art of St. Elizabeth:

o   Anonymous Sienese medallion (XIV Century): St. Elizabeth of Hungary

o   Collinson, James: St. Elizabeth of Hungary

o   Martini, Simone: St. Clare and St. Elizabeth of Hungary.

o   Martini, Simone: St. Elizabeth, St. Margaret and Henry of Hungary

National UnFriend a frenemy[4]

National UnFriend Day (NUD) is an unofficial holiday designed to promote unfriending other Facebook users that are not true friends.  Social media now provides access to just about anyone, anywhere on the globe.

However, this easy global access exposes personal information to theft or misuse and unnecessary cluttering by other's junk posts. In this digital age, it is imperative that identities remain protected, and that time spent on social media be reduced and replaced by face-to-face human interaction. National UnFriend Day was originally conceived and proposed by TV personality Jimmy Kimmel on November 17, 2010 in an effort to remind society of the true meaning of friendship. Kimmel believes that there are many Facebook offenses that can lead to unfriending someone, some of which include, posting too much, spell-checking too little, repetitively posting the same kind of material, not googling before asking questions, being on Facebook all the time and sending in-app Facebook requests for games. In addition to unfriending irritating offenders, it is advisable to unfriend those whom you no longer have steady contact with and any unknown users that may have access to your information and posts.

National UnFriend Day Facts & Quotes

·       According to a report by Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping navigate the world of media and technology, teenagers spend about 9 hours a day consuming media, 1.5 hours of which is spent on social media.

·       As of January 2016, compared to other social networks, Facebook is the leading social network with approximately 1.6 billion active monthly users.  This is in comparison to WhatsApp (900 million active monthly users), Instagram (400 million active monthly users) and Twitter (320 million active monthly users).

·       The average Facebook user has 338 friends.  27% of young Facebook users have more than 500 friends, compared an average of 100 friends for 72% of Facebook users who are older than 65 years of age.

·       36% of Facebook users strongly dislike it when someone shares too much information or photos about themselves, as well as when they post photos of others without asking for permission.

·       I encourage you to cut out some of the friend fat in your life.  A friend is someone you have a special relationship with. It's not someone who asks which Harry Potter character you are. - Jimmy Kimmel, November 2010

National UnFriend Day Top Events and Things to Do

·       Go through your privacy settings on Facebook. Keep in mind that some of the people that you have previously friended may not be friends at all. Your privacy settings can control who is able to see your content and whose content will show up on your news feed.

·       Decide who you are going to unfriend on Facebook.  Facebook also offers the possibility of making friends into acquaintances. Your acquaintance list can then be separated from your friend list, allowing you to publish and read 'friend-only' content.

·       Review your posting habits.  Have you been posting too much content, or have you been posting photos of your friends, without receiving permission? Check to see whether you have also violated any Facebook UnFriend Day Offenses as defined by Jimmy Kimmel.

·       Watch movies about friendship.  Here are some to consider:
1) Stand by Me (1986)
2) The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (2005)
3) Good Will Hunting (1997)
4) The Intouchables (2011)
5) The Social Network (2010)
6) The Bucket List (2007)
7) As Good as it Gets (1997)

Thursday Feast

Thursday is the day of the week that our Lord gave himself up for consumption. Thursday commemorates the last supper. Some theologians believe after Sunday Thursday is the holiest day of the week. We should then try to make this day special by making a visit to the blessed sacrament chapel, Mass or even stop by the grave of a loved one. Why not plan to count the blessing of the week and thank our Lord. Plan a special meal. Be at Peace.

Feast of the day: Hungarian Goulash 

Daily Devotions/Practices

·       St. Martin is patron saint of wine growers, wine makers and vintners. In France, the tasting of the new wine is done today. Have a Martinmas gathering, serving this year's Noveau Beaujolais wine from France.

·       Today's Fast: Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Individuals with Mental Illness

·       do a personal eucharistic stations of the cross.

·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Pray for our nation.

·       Rosary.



[1]FindLaw Staff | Reviewed by Laura Temme, Esq. Preamble to the Constitution. 18 07 2022. https://constitution.findlaw.com/preamble.html#:~:text=The%20preamble%20to%20the%20Constitution%20is%20an%20introduction,intention%20of%20the%20entire%20document%20full%20of%20laws. 10 11 2022.

[2]Schouppe S.J., Rev. Fr. F. X.. Purgatory Explained

[3]http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2017-11-17


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